From leisurely brunches to healthy starts, it’s clear that consumers’ interest in breakfast is here to stay. But competition during the morning daypart is also increasing, from both foodservice operators and consumers themselves—after all, most consumers still eat breakfast at home, according to Chicago-based research firm Technomic.
Coaxing consumers out of bed and into a restaurant for breakfast isn’t easy, but operators who menu flavorful takes on morning classics can offer exciting dishes that appeal to consumers and give breakfast sales a boost.
Cheese, for example, has long been a staple on breakfast menus, and thanks to the sweet-and-savory flavor trend, it offers operators more flexibility than ever before. Bold cheeses such as cheddar, parmesan and pepper jack can elevate breakfast sandwiches and omelets, while milder cheeses such as Brie and Swiss pair well with fruit, pastries or pancakes. Ethnic-style cheeses, including cotija and feta, instantly flavor dishes with global accents.
Adding cheese to menu items also can give them a higher-end look and feel, and operators can upcharge accordingly. At West Egg Café, a Southern-focused casual concept in Atlanta, diners can add cheddar cheese to any omelet for 60 cents, or they can choose specialty cheeses such as smoked Gouda or Swiss for $1.00 each.
Here’s a snapshot of cheesy breakfast dishes appearing on menus across the country.
Mushroom & Apple & Cheddar Quesadilla: house flour tortilla, Brussels slaw, chive yogurt; NA
New York City
Pizza’ Al Uovo: fior di latte, fried farm eggs, basil, smoked pancetta, pecorino, chili oil; $14
Blu Jam Café
Brunch Carbonara: Arborio rice, crispy smoked bacon, green peas, parsley, parmesan, poached eggs, herb pistou; $14
Southport Grocery and Café
Sweet & Savory French Toast: French toast, smoked ham, baby Swiss, mustard syrup; $11
Cuban Breakfast: Seasoned black beans and rice, fried egg, white cheddar, avocado, sour cream, spinach-jalapeño sauce; $9
This post is sponsored by Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board